Saturday, March 12, 2011

The Boy In The Striped Pajamas

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas by John Boyne is one of those books that leaves you thinking. It is a simple book because it is told from the perspective of a nine year old boy. The simplicity and innocence of this book is what makes it so powerful. It is the story of two boys sitting on either side of a fence. Not just any fence; a fence that separates a  Holocaust concentration camp from the rest of the world. Both boys, one a Jew and the other an "opposite", don't understand what is going on and why they have to be separated by such ugly barriers. Not just the physical barrier of the fence, but other barriers such as hatred, ignorance, misunderstandings, and racism.

In trying to sort out the difference between his side of the world of soldiers and the other side of the fence that contained emaciated and dying people wearing the striped pajamas, the boy said, "What exactly was the difference? he wondered to himself. And who decided which people wore the striped pajamas and which people wore the uniforms?"

If we could rid ourselves of false judgments and misconceptions of people and break down those fences and barriers we would find that there is no difference. It took the innocence of a 9 year old boy to realize this in the middle of one of the most ugly places on earth. The Boy in the Striped Pajamas is a great read...very sad, but it leaves you with a powerful message.


Captivating Eyes said...

It's such a powerful book. I almost teared up just reading your blog.

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